Reaction dynamics in a parallel flow channel PEM fuel cell

Jay B. Benziger, Erin Kimball, E. S.J. Chia, Yannis G. Kevrekidis

Research output: Chapter in Book/Report/Conference proceedingConference contribution


The spatiotemporal dynamic response of a segmented anode parallel channel polymer electrolyte membrane fuel cell was monitored following changes in flow rate, temperature, and load resistance. Autohumidified operation with dry feeds at 1 bar pressure was achieved below 70°C, where the convective transport of water vapor was less than the water production by the fuel cell current. The current could be ignited by a single injection of water into the anode feed, or by reducing the temperature and external load resistance. Co-current flow of the hydrogen and oxygen led to current ignition at the outlets of the flow channels, followed by a wave of high current density propagating toward the inlets. Counter-current flow of the hydrogen and the oxygen resulted in ignition near the center of the flow channels; over time the ignition front fanned out. The spatio-temporal dynamics of the current ignition along the flow channels can be effectively predicted from a model of a set of coupled differential fuel cells in series. This is an abstract of a paper presented at the AIChE Annual Meeting (Salt Lake City, UT 11/4-9/2007).

Original languageEnglish (US)
Title of host publication2007 AIChE Annual Meeting
StatePublished - 2007
Externally publishedYes
Event2007 AIChE Annual Meeting - Salt Lake City, UT, United States
Duration: Nov 4 2007Nov 9 2007

Publication series

Name2007 AIChE Annual Meeting


Other2007 AIChE Annual Meeting
Country/TerritoryUnited States
CitySalt Lake City, UT

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Biotechnology
  • General Chemical Engineering
  • Bioengineering
  • Safety, Risk, Reliability and Quality


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